How to wear snake print without going full Voldemort

Kaye Ford / @fordtography

Kaye Ford / @fordtography

Towards the end of last year, I kept waiting for the animal print trend to fade out. But every time I went on Instagram, walked through the tube or hopped online to see what the latest drops were in Mango, Topshop and all the other usual high street suspects, I was always pleasantly surprised to see that it was still going strong. This year however, we’ve seen a slight shift away from the leopard print of yore as a new fashionable king of the jungle has emerged: slithery snake print.

Now, I’m not a big fan of snakes (probably a hangover from that dickwad Basilisk in Harry Potter) but I’m obsessed with snake print. And it’s literally everywhere at the moment: from those covetable snake print boots from find through to that Topshop snake print dress everybody is trying to copy now. Yeah, I see you H&M.

Luckily, I hung onto a huge and very heavy snake print midi-skirt I got years ago in a sale. I normally only pull it out for the winter months, as it’s this painted beast that doesn’t actually breathe very well. Wearing it on a hot, sticky train in the summer months is a one way ticket to dehydration station.

But given that snake print is a major winter trend and it’s nice and cold now, it’s the perfect thing to wear. But that kind of begs the question, how do you wear snake print without looking extra AF?

Is snake print in for 2019?

It 100% is, baby - or at least it will be for the winter season before the sun comes creeping in again.

After leopard print, faux croc and zebra print had their days in the sun last 2018, it’s now this reptilian print’s chance to shine. On the luxury fashion side, snake was everywhere at all the Autumn/Winter 18 fashion weeks - Marni’s amazing colourful take on the print stood out and I need their asymmetrical coat immediately.

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Fusing halves together. #MarniFW18

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It’s since trickled down in a big way to the high street, with people particularly clamouring after snake print boots (Mango did these incredible thigh high ones which I wish I had the balls to rock) and snake print dresses. Walk into any shop and I bet you you’ll find at least one snake print shirt to gush over.

How to wear snake print

As with any other pattern, snake print can be pretty loud and tends to dominate an outfit. If you’re looking for a versatile piece that’s slightly easier to style, I adore snake prints that have a more neutral colour palette - like this beige midi skirt, though something in grey or white would work too.

When it comes to snake print trousers, skirts or bottoms of some kind, I love pairing mine with a cosy sweater. Since this midi skirt is pretty bulky, I went for this unicorn one that’s better fitted - although it has a big print on it, the colours are quite muted so I felt like it kept the outfit from straying into tacky territory.

However if I was wearing - let’s say - tighter fitting snake print flared trousers, I’d 150% go with a chunkier sweater in white, deep navy or even bright red to jazz things up a little. I’ve seen a lot of people with a similar take on styling who’ve thrown on a camel coat and baker boy hat to finish it all off, which always looks super stylish.

how to wear snake print

Snake print dresses are a hell of a lot of fun too, but they basically dominate an outfit. I’d say to make your dress the pivotal point and to avoid any other clashing prints as far as accessories go. I’d go with a pair of big gold statement earrings, knee high leather boots, a bright red lip and long winter coat in a colour like forest green or burgundy to keep things interesting.

A shirt in the reptilian print is probably the easiest way to go if you want to get in on the fun, but don’t want to make a massive statement. A collared button up is always a classic and totally office appropriate, especially if you pair it with a pencil skirt or a pair of sharp cigarette trousers.

how to wear snake print

what i’m wearing.

Topshop Snake Print Midi Skirt, three years old

Coach Uni Intarsia Sweater, gifted but available here

Beaded Bag, gifted by my mother

Mango Thigh High Black Boots, sold out but high heeled version here

Gold and Pearl Dangling Earrings, mama Hills’ hand me downs

Snake print shoes and bags are also an easy way to bring the trend into your wardrobe, but not have to put too much brainwork into styling. They can step up a lazy day outfit in a second - taking you from ‘today is too much effort’ to ‘this was effortless’ in a heartbeat.

Done with the styling advice? Now onto the fun stuff, here’s some of my favourite snake print pieces this season…

Meg’s picks

Snake Print Dress

snake print dress

Warehouse Snake Print Dress

£52 at John Lewis

This snake print dress is slightly more colourful, but still relatively low-key. (Side note: Warehouse are really nailing their collections recently.)

Snake print skirt


Mango Snake Print Skirt

£35.99 at Mango

Slip skirts are a big thing this season and this flowy piece from Mango is a sweet way to nail two trends in one. Also, this styling is ON POINT.

Snake Print Shirt

snake print shirt

Mango Snake Print Shirt

£49.99 at Mango

The oversized lapels on this shirt bring a menswear edge to this statement top. It’s definitely pricey, but you’ll get a lot of use out of it.

Snake print trousers

snake print trousers

Na-kd Pu Faux Leather Pants in Green

£41 at ASOS

These faux leather trousers make a definite statement and can be easily dressed up or down, depending on the situation. The key is choosing a top and accessories that don’t compete, otherwise your outfit will be one long scream.

Snake print boots

snake print boots

ASOS Design Rhythmic Premium Leather Lace Up Boots in Snake

£80 at ASOS

It doesn’t get more bad ass than this. With a steel capped toe, double buckle detail and a tip so pointed you could kill a man, these would look awesome under a midi-length dress.

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Megan C. HillsComment